Escaped jail inmate dressed in orange jumpsuit flags down taxi www.privateofficer.com
Chief Deputy Jay Alstadt said Holden J. Wooley, 23, whose last known address is 1191 Daugherty Road, Apartment 4, Daugherty Township, was transported from the jail to Heritage Valley Beaver for treatment after he began having seizures over the weekend.
Alstadt said Wooley called a local taxi service to pick him up at some point during his four-hour hospital stay. He was waiting outside about 10:45 p.m. Saturday in his jail uniform when the taxi arrived. The driver refused to transport him, Alstadt said. Hospital security officers saw Wooley and attempted to stop him from leaving, but he fled into a wooded area near the hospital.
Sheriff’s deputies and local police searched for Wooley, who was being held in the jail on a charge of retail theft stemming from a November 2011 incident, along Beaner Hollow Road and the surrounding area for about 2½ hours Saturday evening. Beaver police assisted deputies and Bridgewater police in the search because Brighton officers were responding to other incidents at the time, Brighton Police Chief Howard Blinn said.
County emergency dispatchers later received a call from residents at 1706 10th Ave. in Brighton stating that a man carrying a lead pipe was at their door about 12:30 a.m. Sunday.
The man, identified as Wooley, fled and hid on a neighbor’s enclosed porch when officers arrived, according to Beaver officer Jeff Wijnen-Riems. Wooley attempted to run again when officers found him, but Beaver’s K-9 dog stopped him and police used a Taser to take him into custody about 1 a.m., Wijnen-Riems said.
Wooley was taken back to the hospital and received stitches and staples for a dog bite on his leg before he was returned to the jail.
Alstadt said that when Wooley was transported to the hospital earlier in the evening, a sheriff’s deputy followed the ambulance and stayed with Wooley until Beaver County Judge Richard Mancini granted him a temporary medical furlough that allowed the officer to leave the facility while Wooley received medical treatment.
Medical furloughs are typically granted only for individuals who are charged with minor offenses and when there is no indication of an escape risk, Alstadt said.
“(Wooley) gave no indication at all that he had any ideas of leaving,” Alstadt said. “He was not considered at that time that he was an escape risk.”
Deputies told Wooley that if he left hospital grounds, it would be considered an escape from custody and he would face charges, Alstadt said. Deputies routinely advise hospital security and nursing staff when an inmate is being left for treatment, and to inform deputies when the inmate can be brought back to the jail, Alstadt said.
Heritage Valley spokesman Daniel Murphy on Monday said health system President and CEO Norm Mitry is “extremely concerned with what happened on Saturday,” but Murphy did not have any more information about the circumstances surrounding the incident.
Heritage Valley officials, the sheriff’s department and county commissioners were scheduled to meet Monday to discuss the situation further, according to Murphy and Commissioners Chairman Tony Amadio.
Alstadt said the sheriff’s department plans to charge Wooley with escape and he could face additional charges from Brighton police. No charges related to Saturday’s incident had been filed against Wooley as of Monday evening, according to online court records.